Lufkin ISD creating a police force

By Jena Johnson - email

LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - A recent string of violence at Lufkin High School has triggered the school district to bring in their own forces.

"If kids will fight at the church house, they'll fight at the school house," Superintendent Roy Knight said.

A violent brawl at a church that trickled over to the  school's campus has forced Lufkin ISD to bring in their own forces.

"We just had three in one day," Knight said. "We also had some adults involved in this as well to create a real heightened sense of awareness about the fights."

Knight says the school will have their own police department by next fall.

"We're visiting with a number of other school districts our size that have a police department and see what their road to success was so we can emulate their practices and then find the best fit for us without new officer staff," he said.

In the meantime, Lufkin police have stepped in, patrolling the campus throughout the day.

"It's how we ramp up to ensure the safety of those 98 percent to help bring the two percent around in line with the kind of behavior their moms and dads expect from them," Knight said.

Knight says 90 percent of fights involve high school freshmen.

"They're just sophisticated enough to talk themselves into a jam and not sophisticated enough to talk themselves out so they're cornered and they fight that's historically accurate," he said. "That's been true for the past ten years."

Controlling future fights from breaking out is top priority for Knight.

"We're not a particularly violent place, but neither are we immune from that," he said.

They're taking preemptive action to make their school a safer place.

Knight says he plans to hire between three and five police officers by next fall.